I decided to get in on the marble magnet craze and make some for myself. After reading a couple of different tutorials around the web, I thought that this looked like a good craft to try for our MOPS group next year. Really, I just wanted to find an excuse to buy some Mod Podge and play.
I primarily used the tutorial at Frugal Girls. There’s also a good tutorial at not martha, although she uses a different adhesive. I’m sure there are tons of other tutorials for this project on the internet, but I thought I would share what I did and learned in the process of trying out this project.
This is an incredibly easy and inexpensive project to do. Here is the supply list:
- Flat, round marbles – usually stocked with the floral supplies. I found a bag of 20-25 clear marbles at the dollar store. Craft stores also carry these, but they may be more expensive there.
- 1/2″ or 3/4″ round magnets (depending on the size of your marbles) – I bought mine at the hardware store, but I found them to be cheaper at Michael’s.
- Scrapbooking paper scraps, magazine clippings, stamped paper – whatever you want to use as the background for the magnet. Small, bright prints and pictures work best – especially images and prints with high contrast, although it depends on the look you want. Photo paper does not work well with the Mod Podge, but another type of adhesive may work better.
- Mod Podge – I used matte, but glossy would also work. The large 16-ounce jars run about $10 regular price at our local crafting stores, so around $6 with the usual 40% off coupon. Smaller jars are naturally cheaper.
- Glue gun
- Foam brush
These are generally the steps that I followed to create my marble magnets:
- Select the paper you wish to use as the background for your magnet. Lay the marble on the paper and center over the design as you want it to appear on the finished magnet.
- Use a pencil to trace the shape of the marble onto the paper. Cut slightly inside the lines. Trim down your paper as needed to fit the shape of the marble. It doesn’t really matter if the edges of your paper are perfectly round because you won’t really be able to see them from the front of the magnet. As I made several, I found it was just as easy to hold the marble and paper together and cut free-hand around the perimeter.
- Apply a thin coat of Mod Podge to the flat side of the marble. This is about how much I applied:
- Adhere the right side of your paper circle to the marble, adjusting the paper to the orientation you prefer while wet. Wipe up any excess Mod Podge on the marble. It’s okay if a little bit dries on there – it’s pretty easy to scrape off with a fingernail.
- Allow the marble to dry before attaching the magnet. I found that it generally took around 10 minutes for the paper to be set enough to glue on the magnet. Without time constraints, it’s probably preferable to allow the marble to dry for 20 to 30 minutes.
- Using a glue gun set to “hot,” attach the magnet to the back of the marble. Allow ample time for the glue to harden before using your new magnet.
Here are some pictures of magnets I completed:
I really liked the pink paper, but the pattern is almost a little too subtle to be viewed from a distance. Ultimately, I thought that the high contrast of the black & white paper worked the best for my refrigerator magnets.
A note of warning with images printed on photo paper: For some reason, the Mod Podge does not seem to want to dry and harden on coated photo paper with this project. I tried a photo paper magnet, and it still looks like it hasn’t dried 24 hours later. I’m still waiting to see if it will completely harden over time or if the coating on the paper is going to completely prevent the Mod Podge from hardening correctly.